The casks we use at Ardbeg come from various sources. The vast amount of whisky matures in ex-Bourbon oak. However, there is always scope in the future to experiment with different type of oak casks.
In maturation only 1st and 2nd fill casks are used. All our new 1st fill Bourbon casks come from suppliers in the US. Our chief nose Dr. Bill Lumsden selects them. Other casks come from Speyside Cooperage, and Craigellachie.
Primarily barrels have been used in the past, but now there is a substantial mix between barrels (for Ardbeg Ten Years Old,) and Sherry Butts (some of which are used for Ardbeg Uigeadail). We also use some new French Oak Barrels for Ardbeg Corryvreckan. And these are our three core expressions.
Because Ardbeg sits very close to the sea, the whisky receives a certain salty, iodine character while it matures.